Advent Candles: Faith
This year, the Luke 14 Blog has decided to take a closer look at the advent candles and how their traditional meaning relates to disabilities and disability ministry. For the first week, Jesus Kids Coordinator Lee Anne LaPlue dives into the second candle, the Faith candle.
“For by grace are you saved, through Faith.”
Ms. Gwen McAllister walked by faith. She played piano by faith, ate by faith, dressed by faith, entered vehicles by faith, lived by faith. In all aspects of life, Ms. Gwen was forced to believe without seeing, for Ms. Gwen was born with no eyes. Most of us struggle to engage with a world that is not visible, knowing that we cannot control that which we cannot see. Jesus said, “Blessed is the one who believes without seeing.” Forced to engaged in an unseen world through faith, Ms. Gwen was blessed in her blindness. Without the option of tightly controlling her surroundings, she experienced the freedom of childlike trust in a Father who promised to clothe her more majestically than the flowers of the field and feed her more fully than the birds of the air.
We all experience seasons of blindness, where answers to desperate questions are unattainable, where the future is murky, and the “whys” of life loom like dark clouds refusing to release life-giving rain. These moments of blindness offer unique blessing. In such moments, we are encouraged to release control of that which has been capturing our gaze, and return our attention to our Father. We cannot see an invisible Kingdom while enamored by a tangible world. We cannot serve the former while seeking to control the latter. He is Sovereign King over both.
Christ removed Paul’s sight in order to reveal to him His Kingdom. In blindness, Paul’s faith was born as he was forced to believe the Word of an invisible God. He later would write to the Church in Corinth that Christ’s power is made perfect in weakness. In blindness. In disability. In the burdensome “whys.” In future uncertainties. In brokenness. There our faith in a Good, Powerful, and Loving Father is birthed.
If this Advent season brings longings for things yet unseen, you are not alone. The faith through which we are saved requires a childlike courage to walk steadily towards an invisible God. So, we wait blindly, believing without seeing, for a Deliver who will one day bring the fullness of sight that we need to behold His Glory.